Your Influential Thinker

Monday, May 03, 2010

Time Magazine has released its annual list of the world's 100 Most Influential People in four categories: Leaders, Artists, Heroes, and Thinkers. We want you to make your own list, particularly in the "Thinker" category. Nominate an influential thinker in your life here and tell us why they deserve to be on the list!

Comments [40]

JacquelynJoan from Long Island

John Prendergast for his dedication to Darfur and other regions in conflict.

May. 05 2010 08:59 PM
Daniel Plaat from New York

Sam Harris for his positions on morality and science.

May. 04 2010 10:21 PM

Michel Martin, host of NPR's Tell Me More. Consistently thought-provoking and insightful.

May. 03 2010 02:10 PM
peter from vancouver

richard dawkins: a great writer and defender of science and reason

May. 03 2010 12:32 PM
Gene from NYC

Oh, Boo-Hoo for the caller upset that Obama didn't take time out of running the country to read his letters (and the thousands more daily, I'm sure) and thoughtfully respond to them.

And Limbaugh did, so he's the best thinker(!)

Yes, but Limbaugh doesn't actually have to get anything _done_.

Yet another reason Limbaugh is so high on the list of "Thinkers for Imbeciles."

May. 03 2010 12:04 PM
laura finn

A man called & said his thinker, who had written much re: anti-racism,our culture..Who? thanks, couldn't find it referred to above. Thanks

May. 03 2010 12:01 PM
rick from Queens, NY

Best thinker is Jordan Maxwell at

May. 03 2010 11:59 AM

Andrew Cohen
and Ken Wilbur

both in books, are giving a historical and evolutionary overview of the global universe that can completely alter how we view the world we live in and what we can creatively be doing and thinking differently - both are concerned and engaged in Creating a New Culture.

May. 03 2010 11:59 AM

Thomas Friedman with his America-focused, ecologically-conscious, economic writing. He should be in the Obama administration.

May. 03 2010 11:59 AM

Hannah Arendt, one of the most intellectually honest and courageous thinkers of the 20th century.

May. 03 2010 11:58 AM
Laura from Manhattan

William R. Polk, he got it right about Vietnam in 1963, he and George McGovern got it right about Iraq, and his books are gems.

May. 03 2010 11:58 AM
Stan from New Jersey

David Rieff.

His rejection of both left- and right-wing pieties on international relations allows him to get to the truth.

May. 03 2010 11:57 AM

Of course I meant "The Wire" re David Simon.

May. 03 2010 11:56 AM
JP from Park Slope

I assumed people whose thoughts have directly influenced us. So the folks I met who influenced me.
Tich Nhat Hanh - On o fthe greatest peacemakers.

Hernando DeSoto Economist in LATM

Bill Moyers

James Martin S.J. ( priest writer) The vatican shpuld hire him.

Prof Gerorgi Perelman ( his work on the Poincare Conjecture will be the foundations for new technologies)

Postumous ( in our time)
Prof Richard Feynman What can I say about the discover of QED.

Prof Jacob Schwartz One of the inventors of the parallel computers and mathematical computing.

May. 03 2010 11:55 AM
Maud from NY

Noam Chomsky,
Amy Goodman, and
Barbara Ehrenreich for their courage and fortitude in bringing us the US and the world we'd otherwise hardly know.

& many others of course both US and other nationalities.

May. 03 2010 11:55 AM


May. 03 2010 11:55 AM

Enough coverage was given to the turning on of the LHC that you would think at least one physicist would make the list. While not the greatest choice, his name has at least been put in the news: Peter Higgs.

May. 03 2010 11:55 AM

Tomas Transtromer, Swedish poet.

I mean, he's no Lady Gaga but...

May. 03 2010 11:55 AM
The Truth from Becky

I would have to say CNN's Roland Martin and Anderson Cooper.

May. 03 2010 11:54 AM
Elli from NYC

David Brooks. Love his commentary on PBS Newshour.

Also David Simon of "Wired" and "Treme".

May. 03 2010 11:54 AM
gary g from nyc

Christopher Hitchens !!!

the voice of truth and reason taking on the
"religious" ....

May. 03 2010 11:53 AM
HC from Brooklyn

Slavoj Zizek for helping us rethink politics, economics, pop culture, psychoanalysis and most significantly philosophy. Too bad you haven't had him on the show yet, as far as I know.

May. 03 2010 11:53 AM
The Truth from Becky

Lady Gaga??! Seriously Time? There goes your credibility,...if you ever had any!

May. 03 2010 11:52 AM


May. 03 2010 11:51 AM
Lee from Hell's Kitchen

Phillip Blond.

The number of public intellectuals who recognizes that the social laissez-faire of the 1960s and the economic laissez-faire of the 1980s are two sides of the same coin is still small for the time being. Of that handful, it is only Blond who has the ear of the (potentially) powerful, in his case, David Cameron.

May. 03 2010 11:45 AM
Linda Lopez from Upper West Side

George Friedman, editor, STRATFOR. Parsing the thorny intelligence and security issues we face as a nation.

May. 03 2010 11:43 AM
rosemary parish from Princeton NJ

Chris Hedges and Naomi Klein are, in my view, leading public intellectual who no one has heard of but everyone should know. They have written "Empire of Ilusion" and "The Shock Doctrine" (respectively) which offer the best analisis of how we got into this mess from a cultural, political and economic perspective.

May. 03 2010 11:42 AM
carl from rego park, ny

regarding influential people. i recommend leon panetta. despite having no spy experience, he is getting high marks for the job he is doing as cia director. he was a member of the iraq study group, balanced the budget forpres. clinton, a great congressman and a great professor at the panetta institute in monterey, calif.

May. 03 2010 11:41 AM
Charlotte from Brooklyn

(Oops--living) Chomsky? In politics, no one else seems to tell it as straight and be as informed as he.

May. 03 2010 11:39 AM
Gail Segal from New York City

Tony Judt. I am not a historian or intellectual - rather a poet and filmmaker - I teach in the Graduate Division of Film at NYU. During the stressful days after September 11th, 2001 Judt's incisive thinking in his essays gave me more than anything else the sense of safe ground to stand on. This was the value of his glaring gaze at hard truths. His book on the history of Europe is astonishing in scope and depth and the new work, "Ill Fares the Land" wrestles ideas to the page with a strength of mind that, for me is humbling. I could say many esoteric, lofty things about his thinking, but mostly I regard Judt's offering as the kind of ongoing provocation that forces me to consider and reconsider large issues that ripple across the smallest gesture of daily life.

May. 03 2010 11:38 AM
Glenn from Queens

Evo Morales (President of Bolivia) a farmer who became president of his country. Now doing so many good things for his people and country. He thought about the problems of his country and people and now implementing changes I can believe in. Not only does he think about his country, but the planet as well.

May. 03 2010 11:37 AM
Charlotte from Brooklyn

Charles Darwin: evolutionary theories have radically shifted the way we see and explain ourselves and have influenced all biological and social modes of inquiry.

May. 03 2010 11:36 AM
J.V. Amaral from Ocean New Jersey

Terence McKenna

Sadly, Mr. McKenna remains largely unknown in the general public and in the sphere of rational discourse. He has contributed to theories of evolution, as well as in the arts and social criticism. His talks produce incredible breadth of vision and synthesis of ideas, and if the world would only study his work with an open mind, I believe that peace would truly flourish. He was a true hero.

May. 03 2010 11:35 AM
Deborah Stevenson from Brooklyn

Doris Lessing - cracked open the world for me as a college student in the 70's. Iconoclastic, intelligent, mystic and visionary. Fierce. An inspiration.

May. 03 2010 11:32 AM
Henry from New York

Short list:
Avishai Margalit - applicable philosophy
Tony Judt - Profound sense of history
Susan Jacoby

May. 03 2010 11:31 AM
John Lobell from New York

I am assuming we want living, so I will leave out Joseph Campbell, and American, so I will leave out David Deutsch

Stephen Wolfram
Karl Chu
Haresh Lalvani
Eric Drexler
Ralph Merkel

May. 03 2010 11:30 AM
David Gillanders

Raj Patel.

May. 03 2010 11:29 AM
oil monkey

John Michael Greer and James Howard Kunstler

May. 03 2010 11:28 AM

The Time lists are comical. They should embarrass anybody working at that 'news' magazine -- indicative of the narrow provincialism of Time and much American 'thought' today.

May. 03 2010 11:28 AM

Osama bin Laden? Truly influential, because of this guy, I can't bring toothpaste on planes anymore.

Seriously, he needs to go on the list as the guy who makes you have to use polident when you visit nanna and peepop.

May. 03 2010 11:26 AM

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